Remote work has never been as accepted or mainstream as it is today.
However, some businesses hesitate to explore the option of hiring people in other countries because the prospect can be difficult and expensive.
Nurasyl Serik and Volodymyr Fedoriv launched Remofirst in 2021 to open up SaaS offerings to more businesses, which they say is more cost-effective, faster and more comprehensive than the current one.
In particular, it allows start-up companies to hire people in more than 150 countries without setting up their own company. RemoFirst serves as the employer of record, allowing that entity to hire businesses on behalf of employees and “overseeing everything related to hiring someone at a company,” Serik said. This includes providing payroll, tax, employment, compliance and work tools, as well as helping businesses develop competitive compensation plans and managing health, dental and vision insurance.
On paper, an employee signs an employment contract with RemoFirst’s local body, Real Employment. This accounts for about 90% of the startup business. It also offers contractor solutions that include the rest of its work and are currently free of charge, although this may change soon.
Remofirst charges businesses starting at $199 per month and in a number of countries. Seric points out that each country has different operating costs.
“It costs between $20,000 and $80,00 to set up a legal entity, and then companies still have to hire accountants, lawyers and HR professionals to maintain the relationship,” he told TechCrunch. “You have to have x amount in a certain country and comply with all the local rules and regulations. That complexity adds time.”
In the year In January 2021, the pair raised $275,000 in a pre-seed round from angel investors, then grew the company to more than seven figures in revenue and became cash flow positive — without a customer — in less than 12 months. Operation. While Remofirst focuses mostly on SMBs, the company also works with enterprises and includes some Fortune 500 companies among its clients.
“More and more companies are going the distance and some just can’t afford it,” Serik said. We believe we are increasing TAM by allowing more companies to go remote.
RemoFirst differentiates itself from outsourcing in that it provides an infrastructure that allows startup companies to hire globally instead of taking on the responsibility of finding and managing employees and all the administrative tasks associated with it.
Late last year, the startup began the process of raising industry funding. At the time, he had five employees, and spent zero dollars on marketing.
That seed round raised $14.1 million in capital in a round that closed in February. Mouro Capital and QED Investors co-led the financing, which included participation from Counterpart Ventures.
Since then, Remofirst – operating in secret – has grown to 40 employees. As it is focused on growth, it is currently not cash flow positive. However, Serik said the company’s revenue rose 11x year-over-year.
Remofirst operates in an increasingly crowded space that includes the likes of Dell and Atlas — both of which have raised hundreds of millions in capital. Dell, for example, started with a focus on contractors, and recently. It is worth 12 billion dollars. Atlas last week He collected 200 million dollars In the last round of funding. Another big player in the space, remote, recently It is set More than 100 employees The price is 3 billion dollars In April. But Remofirst is not deterred by its larger competitors, including legacy vendors and new startups.
“Current vendors are not tech-savvy and are extremely expensive,” Seric told TechCrunch. “And when we started, some of our competitors had raised a lot of money. So it was very difficult for us because these were very well-funded companies in the space.
To differentiate itself, the company talked to potential customers and heard that cost was a barrier — “There are good solutions out there, but they’re cost prohibitive.”
“So we started with the idea of making this service more affordable,” Serik said. “We’re ready to prove that it’s a viable business and that the unit economics are sound, but at the same time, being able to offer 2x to 3x the price of anyone else in the market,” Seric plans to launch the product later this year, which he claims will make it more affordable.
Remofirst aims to provide dedicated account managers to all its clients. “Going international is a very scary experience,” Serik said. Finding that point of contact from day one is critical.
Naturally, RemoFirst’s investors are bullish on the company’s potential. “Transparency,” Manuel Silva Martinez, general partner at Moro Capital, told TechCrunch. [Remofirst’s] Competitive assessment and speed of execution stand out in a growing, but crowded, space.
He added, “RemoFirst’s ability to apply digital overlays to real-world problems in a resource-light way is outstanding.”
Yusuf Ozdalga, a partner at QED Investors, said he was drawn to RemoFirst after realizing how much the firm was able to do with “very little” foreign capital.
“We love it in founders,” he told TechCrunch. “They’ve built their product, grown it to more than seven figures in revenue, achieved fair results, all with very little funding. Very few companies can pull this off, and most often have good product-market fit, good founders, or both.
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